Mediate stretches Senior PGA lead to 4

By Associated PressMay 28, 2016, 12:11 am

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. - Rocco Mediate stretched his Senior PGA Championship lead to four strokes Friday at Harbor Shores, birdieing the final two holes for a 5-under 66.

''I haven't been here in a long time,'' Mediate said. ''I'm looking forward to trying to drive it in the first fairway and see what happens from there. That's all you can really do. ... They're going to be coming and it's going to be fun. It's going to be a lot of fun. It's nervy. It's cool.''

The 53-year-old Mediate opened with a 62 on Thursday to tie the tournament and course records set by Kenny Perry in the 2012 final round on the Jack Nicklaus-designed layout.

''I love it. This place, it's just evil. In a good way,'' Mediate said. ''It's just a great place. It really shows you the control you have. That's why Jack built these greens, I'm sure he said, 'Well, let's see how good these guys are.'''

On Friday, Mediate started play on the 10th tee and birdied the par-4 16th and 18th. He added birdies on the par-5 fifth, par-4 eighth and par-5 ninth, leaving an eagle putt an inch short on the last.

''I had some moments out there where it went a little south, but I covered up with the short game today,'' Mediate said. ''I made some ridiculously good putts to save, and I made a bunch of birdies again. I hit a bunch of good shots. Hit a few loose ones and I covered it up.''

Mediate had a 14-under 128 total. He has two PGA Tour Champions victories after winning six times on the PGA Tour.

Gene Sauers was second, closing with a bogey for a 69. The three-time PGA Tour winner has successfully fought a rare skin condition, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, to play the 50-and-over tour.

''This is a blast,'' Sauers said. ''Coming back from where I've been, when I got sick back in 2011, and didn't ever think I would play golf again and then coming back and playing with some of the best guys in the world. It's a pleasure to be here and I'm humbled to be able to play with all these guys again.

Bernhard Langer birdied three of his last four holes in a 64 to reach 9 under in his bid to become the first player to win all five PGA Tour Champions majors.

''I made more putts today and I hit my irons a little closer,'' Langer said. ''It's a little easier to make a 10-foot putt than a 20-foot putt. I played pretty well yesterday, just didn't get much going. I was a little bit flat. But today I got off to a nice start and continued to play really good golf.''

The 58-year-old German won the Regions Tradition last week in Alabama for his sixth senior major title and 100th worldwide victory. In Alabama, Langer joined Nicklaus as the only players to win four different senior majors. Nicklaus had largely retired when the Senior British Open was added to the major rotation. He only played that once in its first year as a major in 2003.

Mediate played alongside two-time defending champion Colin Montgomerie and Perry. Montgomerie had a 66 to join Langer in the third-place tie at 9 under. The Scot won in 2014 at Harbor Shores and last year at French Lick Resort in Indiana. Perry had a 71 to drop eight strokes back at 6 under.

Club pro John DalCorobbo also was 9 under after a 68. DalCorobbo is a PGA assistant professional at Brickyard Crossing in Indiana. He won the Senior PGA Professional Championship in October.

Fellow club pro J.R. Roth (67) was 8 under along with Tom Lehman (65), Kirk Triplett (69), Brandt Jobe (67), Rod Spittle (65) and Scott McCarron (65). Roth is the PGA director of golf at San Juan Country Club in Farmington, New Mexico.

John Daly missed the cut with rounds of 75 and 74. He had a 9 on the par-4 16th on Thursday.

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Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

“There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

“To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

“To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.